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Pharmacists Offer Guidance on Top Over-The-Counter Medications

WASHINGTON, April 25, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The 2010 Pharmacy Today Over-the-Counter Product Survey, conducted by the American Pharmacists Association, reveals pharmacists believe that 81% of consumers purchase the over-the-counter (OTC) product that was recommended by their pharmacist, 92% of pharmacists walk a patient to the OTC section to assist with a product selection and the average patient consult takes only three minutes of the patient's time.


The annual survey tracks the OTC products that pharmacists are recommending to their patients as well as the interactions they are having with those patients. With more than 100,000 nonprescription medications on the market and more than 1,000 active ingredients, it's critical that patients consult their pharmacist to maximize the benefits from medications and minimize the potential for harmful drug interaction and/or side effects.

Treating and preventing allergy-related symptoms are common inquiries at this time of year. The listing below highlights the #1 recommended products** in the allergy, sinus and general decongestant product categories.

  • Anti-snoring Products – Breathe Right Strips (80% of 510 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Adult Expectorants – Mucinex/Mucinex D/Mucinex DM (75% of 1,467 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Adult Topical Decongestants – Afrin (66% of 669 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Adult Decongestants – Sudafed (65% of 2,070 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Nasal Decongestants - Saline – Ocean (54% of 1,250 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Allergy Ophthalmic Drops – Zaditor (36% of 1,619 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Adult Multi-symptom Allergy and Hay Fever Products – Claritin-D (35% of 2,406 pharmacist recommendations)
  • Adult Antihistamines – Claritin (32% of 2,717 pharmacist recommendations)

As the medication experts, pharmacists are trained in both prescription and over-the-counter medications and can provide patients with important information about how medications may interact with certain foods, other medicines or dietary supplements. Pharmacists can help patients select products that address the patient's individual needs and to navigate their way through the various products available. Pharmacists are the most accessible health care providers and APhA encourages patients to actively seek their advice about the proper use of medications.

The survey, conducted in September 2010, published in the February 2011 edition of Pharmacy Today, completed by more than 1,000 practicing community pharmacist recipients of Pharmacy Today consisted of 11 introductory OTC questions and a series of 77 product categories. The results of the survey are published as a supplement to the February issue of Pharmacy Today. Click here to view the entire Pharmacy Today Over-the-Counter   Supplement.

** Being a #1 recommended product in the Pharmacy Today OTC Product Survey does not indicate Pharmacy Today or APhA endorsement of any product or service.

About the American Pharmacists Association
The American Pharmacists Association, founded in 1852 as the American Pharmaceutical Association, is a 501 C6 organization, representing more than 62,000 practicing pharmacists, pharmaceutical scientists, student pharmacists, pharmacy technicians and others interested in advancing the profession. APhA, dedicated to helping all pharmacists improve medication use and advance patient care, is the first-established and largest association of pharmacists in the United States.

SOURCE American Pharmacists Association
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